Foliage-inspired Information Portal wins design competition for Danish architects
Danish architects CEBRA, developers HP Byg, engineers Viggo Madsen and exhibition architect Elisabeth Topsøe have won the competition to design a new information portal for Rebild, one of the most popular tourist destinations in northern Denmark.
Rebild Hills and Rold Forest in northern Jutland are some of Denmark's most beautiful and unique nature reserves, and thus the area holds an extraordinary potential for offering spectacular experiences in this very distinctive rolling landscape. The team was inspired by the idea of a building which bids visitors welcome and acts as a natural gathering place: an open and accommodating building that offers knowledge and insight before guiding and distributing the visitors into the hills and the forest.
Henceforth the concept acts an information portal, which is both building and nature. The project's distinctive expression and character are derived directly from Nature's own formal language and elements, which makes the building stand out from its surroundings and blend in with nature's scenery at one and the same time. Visitors will experience it as a small section of stylised forest with stems and branches, which rise towards the sky and let us catch a glimpse of what lies beyond as fragments of a whole.
It is created in the encounter of building and nature, and appears as a sculptural structure made of bluff timber, thus making the building accessible to the eye of the observer - very similar to a forest's opening and closing when one moves through it and looks upwards through the branches’ chaotic network of crossing lines.
By shaping the building out of raw cut timber, the visitor not only experiences a 'walk in the forest', and a particular atmosphere determined by Nature's own strength and rustic weight, but also the scent of wood and nature, which sets the mood for the visit to the forest and hills. With its location between Rebildhus and The Fiddler's Museum, the building stands out from its surroundings as a place of significance - a small piece of forest projecting out into the built environment.
Rebild Hills is centrally located in Northern Jutland and is, together with Rebild Forest, one the region's main tourist attractions and recreational areas with approx. 400,000 visitors a year. The information portal is the gateway to this area, acting both as a key to information and inspiration and as a ‘Chinese box’ where experiences are folded out continuously and new layers are added.
The building's distinct characteristic - the 'graphic' strength of the timber's structure and the visual reference to trees and branches - acts as a matrix for logos, communication elements, media, guiding landscape elements etc., in order to create an appearance and a guiding concept, which tie landscape, building and user experience together in consecutive story.